B L Santhosh is new BJP gen secy (organisation)

B L Santhosh. DH photo

BJP national joint general secretary B L Santhosh was on Sunday appointed as party's general secretary (organisation), considered the second most powerful position in the BJP after its president.

Santhosh, who hails from Karnataka's Chamarajanagara, succeeds Ramlal, who returned to the RSS after serving 13 years in the powerful post.

Ramlal has been appointed as 'Akhil Bhartiya Sah Sampark Pramukh' in the RSS.

The post of general secretary (organisation) in the BJP has always been held by a full-time functionary of the RSS and he plays a key role in the party's organisational affairs.

The general secretary (organisation) acts as a bridge between the Sangh and the BJP.

This position was earlier held by prominent leaders like Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Sundar Singh Bhandari, K N Govindacharya and Sanjay Joshi.

Santhosh's appointment comes at a time when the BJP is attempting to unseat the JD(S)-Congress coalition government in Karnataka. He and former chief minister and Karnataka BJP chief B S Yeddyurappa do not share a great relationship.

A Bachelor of Engineering in instrumentation technology, he started his career in the RSS as a 'nagara karyavaha' in Bengaluru. He was Karnataka BJP general secretary (organisation) for eight years since 2006.

In 2014, he was made national joint general secretary (organisation) and has been touring the southern states for party work.

The BJP has described Ramlal’s transfer back to Sangh as a "routine practice", as reported by DH,  but this could be an indication of more changes likely to happen post the change in leadership role in different states.

On Ramlal, Santhosh tweeted on Saturday, "it was 12 years of learning with Ramlal from 2006... I was deputed to political field along with him... Calm, composed, attention to details were his hallmark... He was a father figure to many like me... Back to Sangh work. Wish you all the best-ji...We will miss you."

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